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February 14, 2018

By G. Leon

Blue Chipper back on February 17th vs. Juan Tapia

Greg Leon: How's everything going in preparation for your upcoming bout on February 16th? 

Shakur Stevenson: "Everything is going great, I put in a lot of good rounds of sparring, so I feel good and I'm ready to go." 

GL: What do you know about Juan Tapia [8-1]? 

SS: "I don't know much, I've seen a couple of his fights on Youtube, but he's in for it."

GL: This is going to be your first eight rounder, are you looking to get some rounds in or get rid of Tapia quickly?

Shakur Stevenson: "I can't really tell you how it's going to go, but I am looking forward to eight rounds because it's a lot more time to display my skills. Hopefully it goes some rounds and I'm able to get him out of there in the seventh or eighth, that's what I want. But if it comes early I'm taking him out."

GL: How do you feel about being back on ESPN?

SS: "I feel good about it, I'm glad they keep bringing me back on so I can showcase my talent. Eventually I'm going to be headlining on ESPN and I can't wait until that time comes."

GL: What are your goals for this year?

SS: "I just want to prove that I'm the best prospect out there, by 2019 or 2020 I want to be fighting for a world title."

GL: If Lomachenko and Linares fight, who do you like?

SS: "Lomachenko. I think he's a lot better than Linares."

GL: What was working with Lomachenko like?

SS: "It was amazing. I've been in there with a lot of good fighters already, so it wasn't like it was nothing I've ever seen. I just sparred with him and I did ten rounds straight with Terence Crawford for this training camp. It was good sparring and I was able to hold my own."

GL: Andre Ward is one of your boxing idols. Do you expect him to fight again?

SS: "I don't know, I hope he does. I don't really know if he is or if he ain't, but I hope he does."

GL: Is there anything you're differently in getting ready for your first eight rounder?

SS: "I'm sparring more rounds, I've done more rounds straight with several different guys."

GL How much longer will you be able to hold 126 pounds?

SS: "I don't know, I'm getting bigger. I feel like this camp has been a little bit harder than normal camps."

GL: You've won several championships in Reno as an amateur, what's it like going back there for the first time as a pro?

SS: "Reno is like my best spot, I've put on some of my best performances there, so I'm excited about that."

GL: Other than victory, do you have a prediction?

SS: "A late stoppage, maybe a seventh or eighth round knockout."

GL: Is there anything you'd like to say in closing?

SS: "Tune in on February 16th, this is my first eight roiunder and I'm going to put on an amazing show. Follow me on twitter and Instagram @shakurstevenson to keep up with me."

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